Dreams and Deceptions: A Night of Storytelling

Dreams and Deceptions: A Night of Storytelling
Saturday 1 July
£12 / £10 / £8 for both shows

From an enchanting Yoruba tale of the Orishas to the scandalous story of secrets and rivalry in contemporary Nigerian fiction, Africa Writes presents an enchanting night of storytelling. The Illusion of Truth by Mara Menzies, followed by Maimouna Jallow’s adaptation of Lola Shoneyin’s acclaimed novel The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives. 

Please note this event is for those aged 16+



The Illusion of Truth

Ochosi, the finest hunter in the world, dreams of one day becoming an Orisha. Will his skill and determination be enough to prove himself to the gods? With energy and intrigue, storyteller Mara Menzies brings to life an ancient Yoruba tale of justice and truth.

Mara Menzies is a performance storyteller, playwright and creative director of Afrika Presents, an educational organisation committed to celebrating the diversity of African cultures through interactive play. Passionate about the power of story in relation to identity, she has led workshops and shared stories across the globe. She is in the seed stages of a project at the Kenyan coast exploring how story can positively impact a rural community. She tweets @marastoryteller


The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives

Baba Segi, the ultimate patriarch, must try to unravel the mystery behind his fourth wife’s infertility. Through his quest, we find out about the burdens society places on women and the cunning ways they escape from the confines of poverty and patriarchy. Based on the novel by acclaimed Nigerian author, Lola Shoneyin, this endearing and powerful tale of deception, betrayal, love, and friendship is performed as a one-woman show by storyteller Maimouna Jallow.

Co-founder of Positively African, Maimouna Jallow uses traditional African storytelling to reimagine and explore contemporary tales of modernity, identity and all that exists in the cracks in-between.  A writer, journalist and lover of words, she has performed at festivals across the African continent and beyond. Her fiction and poetry has appeared in the Fifth Draft and Fresh Paint anthologies. She tweets @MaimounaJallow

Musical accompaniment comes from Baba Adesose Wallace – a master percussionist, artist, teacher, philanthropist and social commentator. After coming to London in the early 1980s, Ade formed IBILE. He has graced the stage at Glastonbury and WOMAD leaving audiences in awe. His avid enthusiasm for the use of traditional African instruments gave birth to a distinctive sound – brewing an intricate blend of blues, jazz, afro funk and psychedelia – 100% unplugged; the sound churned out by this incredibly dynamic band utilises mostly traditional African instruments.


Image: The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives – Maimouna Jallow. Photo by Hathor Rao